Kenya: Governor Kuti Appeals for Truce in Isiolo Land Adjudication Row

13 January 2020

Isiolo Governor Mohamed Kuti has urged all elected leaders in the county to put aside their differences and work together towards the realisation of development in the region.

While referring to the row between him and five local MPs over legal notice establishing the county as an adjudication area, Mr Kuti stressed on the need for the leaders to sit down and iron out their differences.

The row has split residents into two factions, something the governor says is affecting development and service delivery.

The county boss challenged elders and the clergy in Isiolo to help resolve the differences for normalcy and peace to be achieved.

READY TO MEET MPS

"I am ready to meet them (MPs) considering that the land issue has taken a new shape and I am challenging clerics to come out and assist us iron out our differences," said Mr Kuti.

The governor wants the notice, which excludes KDF camps, national reserves, holding grounds, Lapsset corridor route and the resort city amended so that adjudication is done only in townships and settled areas.

Senator Fatuma Dullo, Woman Rep Rehema Jaldesa, Nominated Senator Abshiro Halake and MPs Hassan Odha (Isiolo North) and Abdi Koropu (Isiolo South) have already challenged the notice in court and want it revoked and done afresh in line with the Community Land Act 2016.

RECONCILIATION MEETINGS

The leaders have on numerous occasions accused Mr Kuti of snubbing a number of reconciliatory meetings including one convened by local elders, allegations the county boss refuted.

The differences have led to the formation of political camps expected to steer the 2022 campaigns, with Mr Kuti enjoying the support of most Isiolo MCAs.

The MPs have already started castigating the county government over what they say is unhonoured promises and underdevelopment.

Ms Jaldesa, Mr Odha and Mr Koropu, who were previously Governor Kuti's close allies, have now become his harshest critics.

Governor Kuti said while it is crucial for all the leaders to work together, they all must refrain from politicising the land issue and pointing fingers at each other and instead seek solutions to the stalemate together.

AMICABLE SOLUTION

On allegations of remaining mum over the eviction of Burat residents from land claimed by the KDF School of Infantry, Mr Kuti said the county supports their pleas and will continue working with communities in reaching an amicable solution.

Speaking during an interview on a local radio station, he said his administration is working together with the Ministry of Land and other relevant bodies to ensure that those affected by the Lapsset project are compensated.

"My government initiated negotiations with the Cabinet Secretary Ministry of Defence Rachel Omamo and I am happy to report that she has agreed to plan a meeting in future with KDF top brass in efforts to amicably resolve the matter without displacing any resident," Mr Kuti said in his New Year's speech.

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